Wednesday, September 24, 2008

3 weeks have just flew past me!!!

Sorry for the late update.

Finally abit of time to update the blog. Since the fight has been over it's been one thing after the other that needs to be taken care of!

Picking up from where I left off,first it was Beautiful Bali then barely spending a day in Singapore it was straight off to Phuket to train for the fight. In Bali it was all luxurious and comfortable and being spoilt at Villa Raja...But in Phuket it was back to basics =)

Just abit less posh than the Villa Raja!!

No no people......Zig Zach doesn't live the high life all the time!! I lived right next door to my trainer and where most of the local Thai trainers from Rawai were living at. So it was VERY VERY local and simple...Just a room with a bed,a small fridge,a tv,a fan,a big pail and a scoop for showering and thank god a seated toilet (tho there was no flush!!!!!). I even had to hand wash my own training kit and hang them out to dry everyday!!! (mom,dad and sis I hope you're reading this!!!)

The owner of the area that has all these rooms was really nice. Him and his wife were very sweet people,always smiling!! Their kids were lovely too..always playing with their cute cats and kittens outside my room.

So every morning I'd get up at 6am to do my usual 8 - 10km to the gym....and then it was shadow boxing for 10mins,5 rounds on the bag,3 rounds of padwork,sparring and at the same time learning some cool new techniques from Bangman,followed by the usual 200 push kicks and 200 knees to the bag and then ending it all of with weights,pull-ups,sit-ups.

Afternoon sessions started with a 4 - 6km run to the gym,shadow boxing,a harder 5 rounds on the pads and bags,grappling,techniques,weights,push ups,pull ups and sit ups.

Usually in between trainings I'd be just in my room watching some dvds or applying creams on bruises,stretching or just sleeping!!... There wasn't an internet cafe nearby and I was usually too lazy to walk all the way out to the main road so that made the days and hours go by slower!! Life as a boxer can be pretty dull at times haha especially when Im so used to a fast paced life of running around doing loads of stuff all day. But in Thailand as they always say......"Sabai Sabai"

At birthday diner with my trainers wife and the new born,Fah.

Last day of training at Rawai

Though the hours seem to pass ever so slow when you're not doing anything (even my birthday was just another day of training followed by dinner with some friends and my trainer!).....2 weeks of training was pretty much over as I hopped on the plane with my trainer Bangman to Singapore. We arrived in Singapore along with all the other fighters and trainers coming in from Bangkok. Was good to see Yod,Naruepol,Soren and Takeshi again. Me and Takeshi know each other from fighting in the Amateur World Championships many years ago... his gym owner,Craig from Ireland is also a good friend. Takeshi has been in Thailand for 5 years now...!!! When I first met him he didn't speak any english.....only japanese and abit of Thai. Now......we both converse in Thai?!?!

So back in Singapore and right into the fast pace lifestyle, we were all sent straight to the swanky new gym Baan Nak Muay where we had a press conference,photoshoot and interview with the local press. Baan Nak Muay means "House of Fighters" very cool name....and appropriate!! As I've heard it might be the Headquarters for AMAS (Amateur Muay Thai Association of Singapore)

Tues evening was the weigh-in back at Baan Nak Muay. We were supposed to weigh in at 6pm....but things got delayed til about 645...!!!! Every min it got delayed....fighters got more and more grumpy and our tummies got hungrier and hungrier!!! Grrrr.....Making weight SUCKS!!

Some of the fighters there had the giggles watching the amateurs weigh in for the first time....they were so shy to strip off their clothes to weigh in,that they weighed in with their clothes(tshirt & jeans)?!!...And they were then told they were over weight...??? I wonder why....DOHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH haha!! But yeah in the end we advised them and they got rid of their jeans and t-shirt and finally made the weight!

So Weds me and Bangman just hung around at home and didn't really do much. We just stayed in watched tv and got as much rest as much as I could. Time however moved quicker and quicker...and before we knew was time to head to the stadium.

Arrived at the Stadium and saw all the fighters and trainers and Stephan Fox,who quickly gave us a briefing on what we had to do....and which order we were gonna fight in. We were shown where our changing rooms were...Me,Yods and Naurpol got the ladies room as our RED team room!

After we settled down,we all went to have a test of the ring and man..we weren't pleased. The ring was soooooo soft.. which meant it was gonna be like running in quicksand....and we'd get heaps more tired faster!! The ropes had so much slack that we would fall over it if we leaned over while in the grapple!!....The other thing was the canvas was really slippery too coz of the painting of the logos. Think the Association needs to sort out a new ring!!!! It's pretty dangerous if you ask me...

Anyways.....!! I didn't get to watch the earlier fights as I was getting massaged and warmed up in the back. I was happier to fight early coz that means I get to watch Naruepol vs Soren and Yods vs Madsuer.

It was really weird getting warmed up this time...I just couldn't seem to get warm!!?? My legs had been feeling really heavy the last 4 days of training.....I'd tired out quicker than usual....and my kicks just felt weird too?......It was too late to worry about all that anyways as we said our prayers and Bangman put my arab headress over me. It was showtime!!...

Went outside and had to go straight to the backstage. When they announced my name I went in the ring did my Wai Kru. I did it rather fast this time....was just rushing thru it.....not sure why....and same thing my legs just felt heaaaaaavvvvvy!!!

Fight started and we tried to test each other out. I remember landin some hard leg kicks on him in the first just trying to control the fight abit and stay out of trouble. My legs still just felt heavy and it was beginning to annoy me. Round 2 he started to break the distance up and cut out my kicking with his grappling and knees....and I knew this was gonna be a grappling fight...!! It was pretty awkward in the grapple as he was a far bit taller than me. In the 3rd I fet I really lost out on that round. 4th Round I came back abit but I fell for some silly silly knee strikes and Bangman wasn't happy. I remember him in the corner to me saying..."Do you understand?" I said,"Yes yes..." and he goes,"Dont just say YES...Do it!!!!" ...5th round we both came out with everything...I walked in took the initiative to grapple him and it he wasn't liking the pressure...but yeah I think I was abit too late now.

Bell goes end of fight and as we stood there for awhile I kinda sensed....I had either lost the fight or it was gonna be a DRAW. And the ring announcer read out the score card and I was was a draw. I wasn't very pleased with the fight...In Thailand I reckon I would have lost the fight.

Didn't know what went legs felt really tired all through out the fight and in training the last few days.......I wonder was it coz of makin weight...? Was it coz I was over trained...?...I was abit more worried for my shoulders!!! (I didn't even throw ONE punch in this fight?!!) ...Whatever it was....I wasn't happy and neither was Bangman. Even he said that he'd never seen me tire out so much...???..... Guess it's back to the drawing boards again...... =(

Naruepol vs Soren was an awesome fight. Naruepol had control of the fight from the start to the end. He's an awesome counter fighter and very sneaky coz he changes his stance alot and it makes it hard to read his movements. He jabbed at Soren alooottt and Soren unfortunately took alot of em!!! Naruepol landed a good hook in the 4th or 5th round,and Soren went down....but there wasn't a count...?? By this time Naruepol was just moving around and getting his points as he knew he had won already.

Naruepol landing another left kick to Soren's forarm!!

Yoddy vs Madsuer was a great fight too. Round 1 was off to a fast start as both fighters landed some HEAVY kicks and punches to the body and head. Yod however didn't kick as much in this fight. I reckon it must be the ring!?!.... He came out with a hell load of punches and landed some body shots that you could just hear and feel from where we were sitting. Madsuer is an awesome fighter I've seen him in action a couple of times...But Yoddy is just a machine!! He just stalked Mardsuer and the first down he gave Madsuer was just a massive body shot and an upper cut in the 3rd. In the 4th Yod came out firing as Madsuer began to ran out of gas.......and he landed a right hook on Madsuer that just sent him crashing!.....Madsuer beat the count got up and Yoddy just threw combinations after combinations and just finally landed a massive cross on him that put him out.

Yod landing his amazing left kicks on Madsuer

It was a very quiet fight night I have to say. If this fight card was anywhere else in the world it would have packed out....!! I wonder why there wasn't that full that night?

Anyways.....Im pretty unhappy about my performance that night. I felt I lost the fight,but I know I pushed it in the last round to come back and get a draw. I know I was lucky to get a draw. Im not gonna lie to myself and say I deserved to win. Im just gonna have to find out what went wrong and work on it. Also just gotta wait and we'll have to see wether the WMC will give me another shot at the Qualifier.

Alright thanks for reading and thanks for the support everyone.


Saturday, September 6, 2008

Beautiful Bali!!!

So Im in Phuket now.....and it has been a drastic change of atmospere after the nice relaxing and extremely comfortable 4 days I had in hardcore training in Rawai Muaythai with my trainer Bangman!!!

There were 8 of us who went to Bali,we managed to book ourselves an amazing Villa called the Villa Raja. Raja means King in Bahasa Indo/Malay......and the name of the villa could not be more accurate!!! The villa was indeed fit for Kings and Queens!!Checkout the pics I took with my new Nikon S700!!!

The Villa Raja!! Ahh the fun times we all had on the water slide!!!!!

The view we got from the Villa every morning when we woke up and when the sun was setting was just so pleasant and so relaxing...makes you really appreciate nature and the quiet surroundings. The air was fresh,there was hardly any noise and the view of the rice fields was a nice change from the usual high rise buildings and traffic here in Singapore.

Sunset at Villa Raja

The villa came with 3 staff who so friendly and really took good care of us. Everytime we tried to clear up after we ate,they'd rush out and go..."no no you're on holiday....relax....enjoy!!".....Ok they definitely didn't need to tell me that twice!!!!!

We barely left the Villa as we had everything there....there was a menu we could order from and the staff would cook anything of the menu!!... We had massages sent to the villa. We were all thinking..."I could definetly live like this forever!!" The food at the vila was soooooo good that we only left ONE time to an amazing italian restaurant called La Luciola. The sunset view we got at La Luciola was beautiful and the food that came with it was just as beautiful!! We left La Luciola feeling very full yet VERY satisfied!!

Sunset at La Luciola

Me and the gang

For Becky's birthday the staff at Villa Raja cooked up a feast fit for the Kings and Queens!!! It took us 3 days to finish the food!!! They even went out of their way to go and buy us a surprise Birthday cake. A white chocolate and fruit cake!!! Mhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmm!!!! I was being seriously put to the test with trying to refrain from eating all the good food put infront of me!!

Now thats a FEAST!!!!

Happy Birthday Becky!

So after an amazing time at the Villa Raja in Bali,it was reallllly hard for all of us to leave and go back to the real world!! I've been to Bali,but the trip to Bali this time was prolly one of the best and most relaxing holidays that I've ever had!!! The villa and the company who were there really made the holiday a memorable one!!

Before I sign off,I wanna say a massive "Thank You!" to the lovely staff at Villa Raja....Kiki for organizing everything from the drivers to the surprise birthday cake, Elok,Made and Wayan for taking such gooooood care of us, and just being so lovely all the while. And of course to Becky who found and organized the whole holiday for all of us. Im pretty sure the whole gang can't wait to get back there again!!!!!

Right so I will update my next blog entry with some more stories and more pics from my awesome Nikon S700!!